Last week I had the pleasure of reading an article written by a friend from high school. She and I are birthday twins and have been friends for years. I’ve loved following her career as we’ve been apart and there have been many times I’ve been envious of her New York living, magazine writing life. She’s the coolest. And after reading her honest article about trying to get pregnant, I loved her even more.
In her article, she did what I love and hate the most, which is to be vulnerable and open about something that no one else likes to be open about. It’s the hardest and most rewarding thing. She so kindly cited me as a tiny part of what gave her that courage and that, oddly enough, gave me courage to share something too.
You see last week I thought I was pregnant again. Yeah, again. Like I have a four month old and three other kids and holy crap I might be pregnant. Insert TERRIFIED emoji. And EMBARRASSED emoji.
I was so scared and so embarrassed.
I love babies, I tolerate being pregnant and I do want more kids. But not yet. I don’t want numbers four and five to be 14 months apart. I don’t want to do last year all over again. I don’t want to lose my mind for nine more months. ( I really struggle mentally while pregnant.) And I don’t think I can do my job and be a mom and be pregnant again this year.
And I was really nervous about the thought of sharing the news. What would people say? What would they all think? Clearly we hadn’t been careful enough! The whole, “Don’t you know how that happens?” comment would have been all too on point. Uh, we do. And uh, yes, this was an accident.
So yes, terrified and embarrassed sums it up.
I haven’t started my cycle again yet after having Baker but there were several days of bloating, several pounds of weight gain, enough crazy thoughts to get me to run into the store to buy a pregnancy test on the way to Legoland with my kids. I just couldn’t wait a second longer to find out. I chugged a ton of water, about peed myself on the way in and I took that lovely test in the Legoland bathroom. Yes, that is about as unromantic as it gets, but I couldn’t wait for the perfect moment to take such a life altering test. Legoland it was. And it came out negative. Holy cow, I’ve never been more relieved to find that I tested negative for something.
In my circles and situation, rarely does anyone talk about being scared they are pregnant. I have friends who really are trying to get pregnant and I desperately wish I could send help their way. I wish their pregnancy tests would be positive. I wish, I wish!
As women we don’t talk about a lot of things. We don’t share things because we are afraid of offending someone else or seeming ungrateful for the things we have that someone else doesn’t. But when we don’t share, we lose out on a chance to connect with people.
When I was in counseling my therapist talked a lot about the concept of ‘owning our story’ and I’ve found that owning our story allows other people to own theirs too. I might be scared that telling my friends without kids that I hoped I wasn’t pregnant would hurt their feelings. But really I would hope that by sharing my fears, then they could share theirs and we could just root for each other. No comparison needed. Just cheering for each other in our own stories.